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Character Animation DVD by William Reynish

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William Reynish, character animator of Big Buck Bunny, worked the past few months on a wonderful training DVD on character animation techniques.

From the e-shop:

Getting into animation has never been easier! With the advent of Blender, the free and open source 3D application, anyone can gain access to professional animation tools now.

This DVD covers all aspects of computer-based character animation including workflow, acting, posing, keyframes, weight, walks & runs and overlapping action, through a series of video tutorials that are easy to follow and allow you to stop and start playback whenever you want.

And:

The DVD has the following chapters:

  • Blender 101, a great introduction to Blender.
  • Workflow, overview of the process of animation.
  • Rattline Bones, introduction to the free rigs.
  • Get in Role, about rigging.
  • Acting for Animators, learn how to make characters come alive.
  • Posing, tips for sketching and planning.
  • Keys and Breakdowns, about key frame managing.
  • Weight, making your character more believable.
  • Walk in the Park, walkcycle techniques.
  • Run! Running cycles tips.
  • Arc Enemy, learn to polish animation using arcs.
  • Flip-Flop, getting rid of the robot-feel using overlapping actions.
  • The Big Picture, a recap of all techniques.
  • Total running time 183 minutes. The videos play well in Quicktime and the free VLC player.

    Preview teaser is here.

    Samples:

    And the e-shop page with more info.

    As usual the contents are all Creative Commons, so people can use it freely for education, further editing, or just share it. Purchasing a copy will of course benefit new projects in the Blender Institute!

    Thanks,

    -Ton-

    About Author

    Benjamin Bailey

    I am a young creative artist with a dream to conquer the world with my ideas. I love singing, writing, drawing, and modeling in 3D - and I'm ready to put these skills to use.

    42 Comments

    1. Looks great - well done William!

      On the blender.org main page, under Announcements, the link announcing this DVD goes to Blender GameKit 2nd edition instead. Someone should probably fix it.

    2. Hi, thanks for the interest!

      I'll just post some answers here:

      >>QUESTION — Does the DVD teach you how to rig a character with bones or are you already expected to know this?

      No, it is mainly focused on animation, not rigging. However, it does include some nice rigs, and also a tutorial on how to take one of them and apply them to your own character. So you can apply one of the armatures to your own mesh and animate using your character, as long as it's a biped.

      If you want to learn more about advanced rigging, I suggest you buy Bassams ManCandy FAQ, or look at tutorials on the web.

      >>What about Facial Rigging? It would be great if there is a good facial Rigging tutorial.

      Same answer as above. I do show how to set up a simple driver relationship to get a bone to drive a mesh, but nothing advanced. This will teach you some tips on character animation, and is very focused on just that aspect.

      >>And this will be totally useless with the new interface in 2.50 :-( or?

      It shouldn't be a problem. The buttons used to interact with animation tools are very minimal.

      There will probably be a bigger change for riggers, and material wranglers that interact with the buttons window a lot. As an animator, you hardly refer to the buttons.

      Cheers,

      -William

    3. It seems the days of hoping onto amazon it check for books on blender and finding only two books, or search for training dvds and finding none are quickly coming to an end.

      Thanks to the Blender foundation of releasing these great tutorial videos

    4. Good work, William Reynish! I like the great improvement in the second open movie project (BBB) and since you were the lead animator (or only animator?) then I can see this DVD is a great, excellent place to learn from. Bravo! Your work speaks for itself.

      God bless,
      -b

    5. I am really out of money. And have no credit card to buy it from my country.
      I would be very glad to purchase Blender but I really can´t buy.
      It´s written that the content is Creative Commons and can be shared, does it is available to download somewhere?

    6. If there is no torrent it because those who bought it didn't make it into a torrent. any questions on the Blender Foundations view of this matter please read http://blenderartists.org/forum/showthread.php?t=142864&page=4, and does it make sense to release something as creative commons and if they only released it to make money.NO so stop with the conspiracy theories. and to all those who believe that the blender foundation will disappear if they everyone who has there dvd's should have bought them they have other means of income like donations so if your so worried about them by the dvd and donate, for those who want the dvd's but cant afford them you'll have to wait for a good Samaritan to release it on torrents or something share

    7. I absolutely agree with ewomer. And from my point of view, producing really quality art is best support for Blender foundation. Viva la revolution - knowledge must be free. So someone upload a torrent please.

      P.S.: Because english isn't my first language, Your corrections are expected. Actually I will be happy for them.

    8. It finally arrived!! Unfortunatly, for some reason when i open the index.html in firerfox and browse to one of the pages the .mov file won't load. It work's fine in safari though. Strange thing for a blender product not to be compatible with the most popular open source browser.

    9. That's more probably a plugin fault. It's not like the plugins for that thing get programmed by the Blender foundation.

      If it's like the other DVDs try opening the single video files in VLC. Personally I find that better than watching it in a browser window, anyways :)

    10. I got the DVD a few weeks ago. My first observation to the author is that, please don't record your voice in the bathroom. Too much echo!

    11. I bought the dvd and its got great information on it. But the rigs are very slow on my computer and if I try to move the rig in pose mode they are very very slow and my computer stalls. I have 3 gb of ram on my computer. Running Windows Vista. The jim rig is really slow and a hassle to work with. I even tried linking it to a another blend file instead of using it from the CD and its still very very SLOW. if anyone can help me with this it would be great.

    12. hi all, I don't have sufficient money for buy this DVD. Can anyone please provide me this DVD link. I'm doing character animation last one year and i really need this DVD. Can anyone please help me. Thanks a lot.

      Regards,
      Rakesh

    13. @Rakesh Kumar: I understand. You can find the videos in this playlist (http://blendergroupie.blip.tv/#729604) and, using the downloadable subscribe file for Miro, you can download the videos through Miro and watch them on that player. That is how I watched this DVD's videos. If you need the DVD ISO, you can search in Google for the title of the DVD, choose a suitable torrent site, and download the DVD through whatever file sharing program you use, then burn the ISO to DVD. Hope this helps!

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